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Fed up with flats - Time to go tubeless?

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Fed up with flats - Time to go tubeless?

Old 05-06-12, 02:41 PM
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AcornMan
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Fed up with flats - Time to go tubeless?

Thorns on my favorite trail are costing me $6-$12 per ride, which is insane. I've already tried slime in my tubes, which didn't make a significant difference. Is it time for me to get a whole new kind of tire? I know nothing about alternatives to traditional tubes, so any advice would be greatly appreciated, including specific products I should consider.

I don't do any "real" mountain biking. I just ride my mountain bike on an unpaved trail in the city, and also on city roads. I don't know if that makes a difference in the context of my problem.
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Old 05-06-12, 03:06 PM
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Do it. Flats are a thing of the past, with tubeless. Learn how to properly (see YouTube videos) do it and be prepared to re-apply sealant every month if it's hot, or every 3 months, if cooler.
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Old 05-06-12, 04:41 PM
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you said you tried slime....did you try True Goo? that is the stuff we use and it works wonderfully. i don't think you need to go all the way tubeless if you are just on roads and such, tubeless would be overkill. seriously, try True Goo.

http://truegoo.com/
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Old 05-09-12, 04:58 AM
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I'll never ride with tubes again. Go tubeless, use Stans sealant and you'll be laughing. Maybe also consider a heavier tire aswell, such as the maxxis crossmark. Some tires are more puncture prone than others. I've actually got a little post about this on my blog if you want to check it out? http://www.theworkingclasscyclist.co...op-3-xc-tires/
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Old 05-09-12, 12:43 PM
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Acornman. Tubeless is so easy, learn it. Laugh at thorns. Hope you have an air compressor already.
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Old 05-09-12, 01:40 PM
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I'm pretty anti-tubeless...but my local trails are convincing me otherwise. I'm going tubeless on the Hardtail soon. I've had 4-6 flats this year already. 3 of which are pinched from all of the nasty rocks littered everywhere. Lots of thorns and PrickPears too.

I'm going to go with a Stan's conversion for now. I need to go full-on UST with an 823 rim and some sealant at some point though.
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Old 05-09-12, 05:30 PM
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I still say yes to tubes.
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Old 05-10-12, 11:31 AM
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I"M in the process or thinking process at least of going to Stans and finally going away from tubes, not that I get many flats just to do it and reduce my chances that much more.
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Old 05-10-12, 11:34 AM
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Not gone tubeless myself, but about half the people I ride with have, just make sure you still carry a spare tube with you, as if you get a rip in the tire that is more than the sealant can cope with, without a tube, it's a long walk home.
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Old 05-10-12, 11:42 AM
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I ride tubeless, i love my tubeless set up, i still say it's not totally necessary if you "don't do any real mountain biking" and "just ride my mountain bike on an unpaved trail in the city, and also on city roads" as the OP stated. it would be overkill and the proper sealant would be waaaay cheaper.
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Old 05-13-12, 08:19 PM
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Laugh at thorns, and less weight!

Do it!
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Old 05-13-12, 09:49 PM
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how about mr. tuffy tire liners, Ive used them on my mtb for years, pretty decent protection
http://mrtuffy.com/productPages.php
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Old 05-13-12, 10:01 PM
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I've been wondering about these types. http://www.amazon.com/Bell-No-Mor-Fl.../dp/B001UGAJYA

Anyone have experience with those?
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Old 05-13-12, 10:07 PM
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Originally Posted by BenzFanatic View Post
I've been wondering about these types. http://www.amazon.com/Bell-No-Mor-Fl.../dp/B001UGAJYA

Anyone have experience with those?
do those even hold air or are they just a solid tube of rubber???
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Old 05-13-12, 10:14 PM
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OP, I'm like you in that I don't ride the "real" trails (yet!) and also despise flats. Maybe try some liners first as catonec suggested. I threw some liners in my tires, and I truly think they've made a difference. Won't totally stop flats, of course, but just enough not to drive you mad. A cheaper last-resort before going tubeless, if you will. Good luck!
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Old 05-13-12, 10:19 PM
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It looks like from the reviews they don't hold air, but I felt one at the LBS and it feels pretty squishy... It might only be a good option for very lightweight riders.
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Old 05-14-12, 12:29 AM
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Don't do tire liners. They increase rolling resistance, can be somewhat heavy, and are not as reliable as tubeless with sealant. Been there....done that.
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Old 05-14-12, 12:32 AM
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Originally Posted by AcornMan View Post
Thorns on my favorite trail are costing me $6-$12 per ride, which is insane. ...
That is insane. Patch kits cost a few bucks and contain multiple patches.

You could go tubeless and the sealant will deal with most punctures, but not all of them. And then you will most likely not be able to patch the unsealable puncture, and will be back to running tubes anyway.

You could use tire liners and catch some but not all thorn flats and ride all the time with tires that feel completely dead.

You could use Slime and deal with most but not all thorn flats and then end up with unpatchable tubes and dead-feeling tires.

The solution to thorn flats is to ride where there aren't a lot of thorns to pick up. You don't have to move away, but you should try riding on paths where you are reasonably certain that somebody has ridden through previously, and thus picked up all the thorns in their own tires. And stay near the center of the path, don't cut corners or ride across vacant lots, etc.

Note also that if you did do real mountain biking, you probably wouldn't get any thorn flats while doing so. Thorns exist primarily in areas of development and man-made disturbance.
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Old 05-14-12, 03:39 AM
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Originally Posted by RobertHurst View Post
Note also that if you did do real mountain biking, you probably wouldn't get any thorn flats while doing so. Thorns exist primarily in areas of development and man-made disturbance.
Good point. The only flats I used to get were pinch flats as I only rode official constructed XC trails which are void of thorns. Therefor if you are a "real mtb'er" you would be upgrading to tubeless to avoid pinch flats and if you aren't getting pinch flats... your not a real real mtb'er
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Old 05-14-12, 05:33 AM
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I'm getting tired of hearing ”real mountain biker”.

Last edited by ed; 05-15-12 at 07:25 PM.
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Old 05-14-12, 05:53 PM
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I switched to tubless a few weeks ago . Standerd rims , tires ( maxxis) , and Stan' . Ghetto using the 20 inch tube method. It is working great. Utube it . Riding the GDMTBR starting June 1.


Thom
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Old 05-14-12, 09:28 PM
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Originally Posted by The WC Cyclist View Post
.... Therefor if you are a "real mtb'er" you would be upgrading to tubeless to avoid pinch flats and if you aren't getting pinch flats... your not a real real mtb'er
if you aren't getting pinch flats, that means you have the proper air pressure in your tires. i believe the only real criteria to be a "real" mountain biker is

1 - you must exist and
b - you must ride a mountain bike

(sorry, i'm drunk and feeling froggy, so i'm jumpin'....)
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Old 05-15-12, 11:40 AM
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[QUOTE=Cheyou;14223068]I switched to tubless a few weeks ago . Standerd rims , tires ( maxxis) , and Stan' . Ghetto using the 20 inch tube method. It is working great. Utube it . Riding the GDMTBR starting June 1.

What he said^ I switched to tubeless several years ago, I didn't want to spend alot of $ because I was unsure if it would work, so I went ghetto tubeless split tube method...total cost around 5.00 for the 2 tubes and 10.00 for the stan's sealant

after 2 years of riding these over many thorn infested areas, road debris, and glass not one flat or pinched tire flat or air burp and my tires stay inflated as well as a tubed tire

the only maintenance has been to refill with stans thru the removable core presta valve so I don't have to break the bead seal on the tires, and I use a syringe injector, no problems at all

at the beginning of this year I did a second set of tires ghetto split tube and again no problems...in fact I am going to do my winter studs with the gorilla tape method for the winter

I'll NEVER go back to tubes again, I will NEVER use high priced UST or stan's rims, everything will be inexpensive ghetto and this year I will start mixing my own ghetto homebrewed sealant to drop the cost close to nothing to run tubeless

oh and the first set was Mavic 717's rims and the set this year was a set of Velocity P35's, no trouble airing up for the initial seal, used a regular tire pump and the did the shake,lay on the side to get them sealed up...google ,youtube ghetto tubeless for the info

good luck OP

OT...Thom, best of luck on the Great Divide Trail ride, have a safe journey...I've been lusting about doing that ride also

Last edited by doco; 05-15-12 at 11:49 AM.
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